BiH Media and Media Regulators Under Pressure

“The OSCE Mission to BiH is deeply concerned that political pressure on media outlets and agencies in Bosnia and Herzegovina is on the increase”, the OSCE warns in its report “BiH Media and Media Regulators Under Pressure”.

The OSCE calls current developments in the media landscape “worrying” as they impact on the freedom of press and media regulators and the availability of quality information to BiH citizens. The report is addressed to the media and main political representatives and relevant institutions at the state and entity levels, as well as the international community.

It draws attention to a number of recent dismissals within media outlets that give the impression that the media remain vulnerable to political interference. The report also underlines that continuing disagreements on the workings of and appointments in the Communications Regulatory Agency are undermining its independence. It continues by emphasizing the lack of implementation of BiH’s state-of-the-art legislation in regulating the media. The OSCE is also concerned that reports of physical assaults on journalists are increasingly provoking little reaction, despite a rise in the number of such attacks.

The report recommends steps to improve this situation, such as speeding up the implementation of existing media laws, and more focus on the structural constraints that hold back the development of a politically independent public service broadcasting system.

It also notes that the OSCE Mission to BiH will request the assistance of the OSCE Representative on Freedom of Media to launch a number of corrective measures where de facto limitations on the freedom of speech and media are suspected to exist. The report recommends the PIC Steering Board, the international community and domestic civil society actors to treat media-related matters as a priority to prevent deterioration of the situation in the run-up to the elections.

The entire report can be downloaded at